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Australia's dismal record on renewable energy on show at IRENA conference.



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Christine Milne Australia's dismal record on renewable energy on show at IRENA conference Media Release | Spokesperson Christine Milne

Thursday 29th January 2009, 12:07pm

in Climate Change & the Zero Carbon World International Climate Negotiations Renewable Energy

The establishment of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) underscores Australia's dismal record

on renewable energy, the Australian Greens said today.

While many of the countries signing the IRENA Treaty in Bonn this week are making great strides towards

renewably powered economies, the Australian Government and much of the Australian industry appear content for

renewable energy to remain a marginal business.

"Australia cannot hope to transform into a renewable energy powerhouse while neither the Government nor the

industry are interested in making it happen," Australian Greens Deputy Leader and Climate Change Spokesperson,

Senator Christine Milne, said.

"Renewable energy technologies are already capable of replacing coal if governments and industry come together

to make it happen.

"But the Rudd Government refuses to do anything to challenge coal's dominance, and the domestic renewable

energy industry seems unable to effectively promote itself.

"The establishment of IRENA shows that Australia's renewable energy reticence is not shared by the rest of the

world.

"If the Rudd Government signs and ratifies the IRENA founding treaty, its hypocrisy will be on global show. If it

fails to sign, it will only be the Australian people who will come face to face with the hypocrisy of the Government

they so recently elected on a platform of climate action."

IRENA aims to drive "a rapid transition towards the widespread and sustainable use of renewable energy on a

global scale" by providing technical and policy advice to industrialised and developing countries, as well as

promoting renewable energy on the global stage.

"The Australian renewable energy industry needs to take inspiration from the establishment of IRENA and start to

speak up for itself instead of accepting scraps from the table," Senator Milne concluded.

All information about IRENA can be found at http://www.irena.org/

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